These eight-month visiting professorships aim at fostering the cross-cultural, trans-disciplinary scholarly engagement with North American Art at the John F. Kennedy Institute for North American Studies (Freie Universität Berlin) and the art history departments of Freie Universität and Humboldt Universität, respectively. Visiting professors will offer two specialized seminars per semester in American Art History (B.A. and M.A. levels) and participate in the larger academic community of the Kennedy Institute for the duration of their stay. On top of teaching, candidates will be strongly encouraged to supervise theses in their areas of expertise and are expected to organize one international research event, conference, or symposium in Berlin in order to further facilitate the expertise in, and increase the visibility of, the fields of North American Art History and Visual Culture Studies at the institutions involved.
A Terra Visiting Professorship in American Art was created as an annual program of Visiting Professors at Freie Universität Berlin. The position was designed to serve both the John F. Kennedy-Institute and the Department of Art History of Freie Universität Berlin. Visiting professors were expected to stay for a period of 3 months either in the summer term (May until July) or in the winter term (October until December). Two visiting professorships were hosted in each academic year. Within this program the first thirteen visiting professors for American Art taught at the Kennedy Institute (see list).
From 2006 – 2011 the Terra Foundation for American Art offered travel grants to foreign nationals of all European countries. Three grants of 5,000 USD each were offered to researchers at doctoral level and three grants of 7,500 USD each were offered to post-doctoral researchers who have been awarded their doctorate within the past ten years.